He was so humble and that was one of the many things I liked about him. When we met last, he was being honored and asked me for a printed copy of what I had written about meeting him. I had forgotten mentioning that to him, but remember telling him how much his painting meant to me and meeting him that day.
For a man of such extraordinary talent and fame to care about about every single person that crossed his path, shows what an incredible loss this is to more than just the art community.
May he rest in peace.
Mar 18, 2012
Scene on Foot
One of my favorite things that helps me to relax is to walk. I have met many interesting people, seen sights that can only be enjoyed on foot and discovered
from a unique perspective. Eureka
I must have passed this house on E Street many times and always thought it looked very colorful and different but it was just another house, different from others, which is one of Eureka’s appeal. Houses, like people, have their own distinct character and style.
A painting in the yard of this house caught my eye. After my daily cup of coffee, I went back to the house for a closer look. It was a painting of
with those letters boldly stenciled on the painting. Tsurai Beach Trinidad is my favorite place in and that day I was thinking of how wonderful it would be to go there. I was also thinking of the rich Native American history of Humboldt County and the local tribes. Humboldt County
The second time I went back there, the artist was out in the yard and introduced himself to me as “Otto”. He was very modest. Later when I found out later that he was THE Curtis Otto, the experience I had that day grew in its significance.
Art can speak volumes and touch people and open their minds. I have personal reasons why seeing that painting for me was special. For Otto, he wanted to make a statement. Otto told me he had been working on this painting for years but there was something that seemed “incomplete.” Adding the words
, added that final touch for him. He said he never did like the name Tsurai Beach Trinidad, because it did not conjure up . “ Humboldt County Trinidad is in ,” he said. “This beach and the name Tsurai is what the Indians called the area and I wish they would change the name back because this is their land.” Spain
I have to agree with Otto.
This happened when I first moved to Eureka. Since then Otto and I have had several conversations about many things but that day always brings a smile to my face. I learned more about
and Tsurai Beach from him than I could have reading any books or doing research. But most of all Otto, thank you for reminding me that I too can make a difference—my gift is with words. Eureka